Monday, September 14, 2015
Hill stations are undoubtedly the best places to relax. Anyone visiting there would wonder how beautiful the life of natives would be! Oxygen in its purest form, serene weather and absolute exquisiteness around… it is the same that tempts people to acquire land in these areas. But truth is different. Days of folks living out there are absolutely horrible except high class.
Among the hill stations in India, Munnar is considered as one of the perfect destinations for honeymooners as well as other tourists. Any user who browses this name will find picturesque places. Every nook and corner of Munnar is wonderful. Whether it is river, hill, town, resorts or eateries, all serve as places of tourist attraction.
For past one week, Munnar is quiet without tourists. Reason behind it was a strike. Here are a few features of the iconic attempt:
- Conducted by plantation workers of Kannan Devan Plantation
- Ladies in the forefront
- No leader or political parties to lead
- Around 5000 females took part
- Demands were salary hike and increase in bonus
- Politicians were not encouraged
- Venue was National Highway from Kochi to Dhanushkodi
- Protestors blocked NH for nine days
- Most of the participants were Tamilians
On Sunday, opposition leader of Kerala legislative assembly, VS Achuthanandan joined the camp. He announced he’d be there till the problem is solved. A man of 90’s sat for the whole day with protestors. By night, their demands were agreed. Usually they were paid only a minimum of Rs. 232. They had to pluck 21 kilos of tea leaves per day. Even if they give an outcome of 100 kilos, they are paid just Rs. 308. So they went on with a strike for minimum pay of Rs. 500. They also wanted bonus of 20%.
Womenfolk didn’t entertain participation of men in the strike as they feared males can be easily influenced by management. Only person whom they trusted was VS Achuthanandan.
It must be admitted that this is one of the historic effort with no banners of any political or social organization. Sadly the credits of this fight back don’t belong to women of Keralites. Malayali females love to live cozy life. Albeit they wish to oppose for a social cause, their family won’t allow. There will be a few exceptions. Yet most of the family setup in Kerala thinks a woman who raises her voice is a burden. So Malayali female community is covered up with ‘emotional shatters’. Apart from household jobs and office works, she’d seldom have a world.
Spotting a lady dancing in a procession in Kerala might be a tedious task. Happiness, sorrow and anger has its limit when it comes to Malayali ladies and the boundary won’t go beyond the four walls of her house. Way to go Tamil ladies… You showed the world what’s female power. Salute for your courage and effort!
Thursday, July 23, 2015
Image Courtesy: http://daily.bhaskar.com
She came with her two kids for our college ‘get together’. Elder one is four and second is two years old. While the younger baby made merry, other one was quiet. His eyes didn't bear the charisma of childhood. I was observing him all the while.
Though my friend or his mom agreed that her eldest son had all favors of being the first baby, his life was strange. From the day of birth, he had to face lots of problems. While all other kids of his age lived their life so happily, he couldn't.
His mom is a divorcee. She had to face mental, physical and sexual harassment from her husband. And the saddest part is, the elder son had to witness all these almost every time. Moreover, he forcefully made this baby to drink alcohol. For the boy his dad was a scary creature.
As soon as he turned four, his mom admitted him in a nursery school. Other fellows in his class used to entertain him. Yet it'll take time for him to recover.
His mom told me, “He would still say 'I'm going back to my dad's place', when I beat or scold him.”
There is nothing that time could heal especially in a kid's mind. He longs for dad's presence even if his dad never made him smile.
Wednesday, July 15, 2015
I'm a keen observer of advertisements especially the female aspects. There are certain typical styles in which ladies are pictured like:
- Best cook
- 'Washing Machine'
- Fair and Lovely obsessed
- Make-up loving
- Cleaning creature
- Gold admirer
I'm fed up of watching all these shows. I wished for a change badly. Not even a rare shot was played with the actual day to day special activities of ladies except in the ads of napkins.
Now comes the change! Chevrolet has come up with an ad for its Chevrolet Enjoy recently. A young woman plays the role of driver and her mom (can be mom-in-law too) takes the front seat. These seats are always occupied by men. Only exception is when she is traveling with her hubby, the front seat will be taken over by wife at times. Overall, the ad is perfect and cute. Way to go ad wizards!
Tuesday, July 7, 2015
Your appearance and dialogues are perfect for a city dweller. You are doing injustice to yourself by a label 'village girl'- commented my colleague a few days back.
He is true to a certain extend. I keep my hair loose and perfectly shampooed. I apply make-up. I use large fancy earrings, bangles and chains. I'm active in social media over phone. I visit malls and wear modern outfit.
But way back, there was a village girl who tied her oiled hair as ponytail and wore only churidars while going out. I was shy then. I spoke quietly. Confronting before guys was a scary thing for me. I didn't talk or went out with them. Going for movies at cinema hall was a recreation for men in my village. Theaters even now is not a place for women to visit.
I started wearing jeans just five years back. At first, I found it odd. Now I'm absolutely comfortable with that costume.
However during my visit to my hometown, I wear churidars only with shawl 'neatly' pinned. Malls are just for window shopping. I still love to buy things from street-vendors. Visit to theaters have become a hobby for me. Along with pizzas or burgers, I like to eat banana fries, hot dosas from eateries and laddu!
Deep inside, village girl still survives. I must admit parties make me worried as I find myself estranged and outcast. My life and identity revolves around my little green village.
Saturday, June 13, 2015
A book, couple of cushions and view of drizzling made my days. Pelting used to soothe my body before. Now the voice of raindrops give me no pleasure. My mind and physique has changed. I enjoy being busy all the while. From 7 am till 1 am, life is at its fullest. Yet I find I have left out a few activities that I used to do in my yesterdays. Blogging is one among them. I've promised my readers ( I still wonder how many) that I'd update every now and then this year. I couldn't manage to keep up my promise. There are many reasons to skip my habit of scribbling something as “Village Girl”
- Assignments to meet up: I believe I'm a person who makes it a point to finish works assigned. When work comes, naturally this becomes second option
- On time at office: I make it a habit to reach at office without delay.
- Deadlines for library: Constant reminders from librarians to return back books is another thing. Reading some books can be a huge task especially if it is boring and yet you have to complete it just because it is too famous. Otherwise, you'll be left out in a crowd that talk about books.
- House duties to complete: There will be heap of dust in every corner of the flat. I cannot spare the cleaning duties for next day. I must admit my husband is very helpful. But the kitchen in India is still framed for ladies. Moreover I need to eat. Although my hubby would try his hand in cooking once in a while, kitchen is my world.
A few things I'd leave to fulfill my main duties are blogging, watching television and hangouts with friends. Heretofore I'm happy with the happenings around. Don't worry, I'll be here once in while depending on the encouragement and comments you give as a reader and a buddy!
Monday, May 18, 2015
Time is 10.30. I just completed my works at kitchen though a few utensils are yet to be washed. I still have time till 4 o' clock to finish up my role as homemaker and rush to my office. Yet I find it hard to manage time. Usually, I post almost on the same day for any Indiblogger competitions. These days I must admit that I rarely scribble anything for contests. My life is absolutely busy. Only time left for me to read books is while making dosas. With one hand I'd make dosa, while other will hold a book. Even then I've to renew books from library once or twice before I reach the last page.
Here is Amma, my mom who keeps wondering me. She reaches anywhere and everywhere before time after finishing all household duties. Early morning, she'd get up. After the morning affairs, she rushes to temple. Then to kitchen. From breakfast till evening snacks, she cooks within two hours. In five minutes she'd be ready to go to her office. It's not just a salwar, but saree that she has to wrap around. She dresses so neatly without exposing. She will be one of the first to reach office.
Once her work is done, Amma will be back home by around 6.30 pm. She makes a glass of tea or boost and eats a few snacks or leftovers of breakfast. A few minutes of rest. Then dinner making and eating. She'd have some chitchat with us. Finally she'd watch comedy programs in TV and then to bed.
I've talked and seen many busy people. Yet Amma is my guide for time management. In between all these busy schedules, she finds time to care, love and makes her family feel special. I am so blessed to be born as your daughter. Thank you Amma!
(This post is written as token of love for my mom
as well as for Godrej MY FIRST EXPERT contest.)
Thursday, April 30, 2015
“My life is a waste. I’m an utter failure. I must get rid of this life.”- Every month she felt a kind of suicidal tendency. She started crying for no reason. Her days were gloomy. But once her periods started, she felt so relieved. Life became bright again with so much of hopes. Then only she happened to read about pre-menstrual depression. Now she is happy even in those days and knows how to get rid of that state. It is not the case of a single lady, but about 70-90% women has this kind of depression. Medical world has termed it as Premenstrual Syndrome. PMS depression is the most terrible case of premenstrual syndrome which includes both physical and emotional pain. This occurs usually two weeks before a woman menstruates.
Initially PMS depression was neglected with a conclusion that it was caused simply out of a female’s pressure in life. Only from 1980s, it was accepted as an illness by the society. PMS depression symptoms have a key role in a woman’s social, occupational and sexual activities. There are more than 200 symptoms associated with PMS. Feeling of sadness or hopelessness, tensed or anxious, feels like crying always, irritable, difficulty in concentrating, lacks energy, oversleeping or insomnia and change in appetite are the main signs and symptoms of Premenstrual Syndrome. Also, there might be a few physical symptoms associated with the menstrual cycle such as bloating, abdominal cramps, constipation, swelling or tenderness in the breasts, cyclic acne and joint or muscle pain.
Actually PMS depression is caused by imbalance of a few hormones including aldosterone, cortisol, serotonin, androgen and glucocorticoids. It can also be caused by nutritional factors, high caffeine intake, family history, increasing age and stress. Informative counseling is an important remedy to face those days with confidence. In addition to that reduction of sodium intake, decreasing drinking caffeine and doing aerobic exercises can help to reduce the symptoms. Finally, the best solution is to seek an advice of a physician. The symptoms can be effectively controlled by treatment for specific symptoms. Without treatment too, symptoms will decrease gradually and disappear at menopause.
PMS depression is not a life threatening disease. Any female can surmount it by knowing how to overcome it. Always remember that, it is not a special disease. Majority of ladies around the world suffer this emotional problem before their menstruation. Be confident; hang out with your friends! Enjoy every day and have fun…. After all, the world is yours dear female.
Saturday, April 11, 2015
An off day, I and my hubby decided to spend a few moments at Kozhikode beach. We have in fact made a routine to visit beach on our holidays. Kozhikode beach, like every other seashore, has some usual sights of snacks sellers, beggars and security men. There are some variety cuisines like ice-cream porichath (fried ice cream) and ice orachath (mixed fruits or vegetables with vinegar, sweets and ice cubes) near beachside. Only difference at this beach is that people don’t step in to water as the drainage flows to this part of the sea. Anyone can see the open canals carrying waste water which mixes up with sea waves.
We somehow managed to get a quiet place facing sea. The sun has already moved to other side of the planet. Music of waves soothed our ears. Then we saw a little girl of about four to five years of age walking through the sandy shore. Her dress and hair were shabby. She has not taken bath recently. Her hands held some balloons. My hubby decided to offer her ten rupees.
‘How much?’ asked my hubby pointing to balloons. She said ‘dhus rupaiya’ (ten rupees). He offered ten rupees as alms. Instantly, she gave us a yellow balloon and walked away. Though my husband told her to take it back, she moved without listening. I stared at that yellow balloon. There were three words scribbled on it, I LOVE YOU.
Saturday, April 4, 2015
Thursday, March 12, 2015
I wonder how many hours I stared before my laptop to scribble. Yet, I am not sure what to write about my past. Now its official- my blog completed five years! Am I excited? I’m supposed to be so. But I regret for spoiling VOICE OF A VILLAGE GIRL with utter silence for many months.
From the valley of elephant hills, I began a journey with this sphere of mine. Many encouraged while most of the people discouraged. A couple of people told me I boast so much on the subject of blogging. I am not sure of it anyway. As years passed, same ones advised me not to stop writing.
Indeed, I was a common name in blogosphere. I must admit it was a late realization. The best known blogger of Malayalam, Mr. Berly Thomas once told me he have visited village girl’s blog when I gave him my blog link. He told me many have referred my blog and that’s how he’d reach here. He warned me not to make this blog standstill. Sincerely speaking, I was so happy and overjoyed to get complements from such a blogger celebrity.
If you ask me to describe how special my blog is, I’d be confused. My lover, admirer, listener, promoter, friend…! I nurtured from ashes to a somehow good looking blog suffering great pain. I had fights, smiles and tears with my blog. It knows me more than anyone else. It had helped me to hide emotions between words. But I was never faithful. I rarely looked in after three years. Today I regret. My Indiblogger status, Google Rank and followers count are sinking. I’m worried of its future. A successful product has been blemished for my personal grudges.
Again, I must thank all those who stood by me during my good and bad days. Anjali Kumar, Meenakshi, Anees, Vibin Das… Names are lessening each year. Well, I’m all set for a comeback! I wish I could. There are a few more names to mention. Nevertheless they are not interested to hear it from me. Hmm… Relations still remain as my weakness. Happy birthday my love! Keep me moving as you know you are the best to motivate and promote my mind as well as thoughts. Live long…
Monday, March 9, 2015
Photo credit: Harikrishnan
Being a Malabari or a person who resides at Malabar is something I am proud of. I’ve tried to explore almost all peculiar features of this region from festivals, costumes, food (except non-veg) and of courses places. However I’d never view the performance of the best and colorful devotional art form of North Kerala, the theiyyam.
Last Sunday I happened to attend that much awaited art performance. My mother’s home is in Kannur. It is the primary location of theiyyam festivals. It starts by November and ends in May. This season is actually associated with harvest. Earlier it was conducted in barren fields after reap. This is held by families. They usually has a sacred grove named kavu and is considered to have presence of God.
Although I’ve visited many temples across South India, I’ve not been to a theiyya kavu . I felt it is more public and intimate to common folks. There is no much dress code. Only thing you’ve to keep in mind is to remove chapels before entering kavu.
Another point is it is a devotional as well as leisurely festival. If you are a person who keeps on checking the watch and complains it is running late, it is a wrong place for you to visit. You’ve enough time to mingle with people around.
The costume of theiyyam is very heavy and elegant. It takes about 8-9 hours for make-up. The head cover for some are as high as a coconut tree. This headdress is put on once theiyyam artist sits in front of sanctum in holy peetham or stool. And then the artist stares into a hand held mirror. This is known as mukhadarshanam . Then he transforms himself to a holy being. He dances and speaks to people as god. We’d go close to him. He’ll hold our hands and would patiently hear our problems. I was amazed to see such long queues. Human beings of all ages, caste, creed, religion or sex are present there. Usually the whole thing is performed at night.
The highlight of that day was Gandakarnan, a theiyyam that ties 14 fire sticks around his body and has very long headdress. Apart from this, theechamundi is another showpiece where the artist jumps into fire more than 100 times. Next time I’m going to watch it. I’d say if you are visiting Kerala during theiyyam season, never miss these as it it’d not only gives a delight to your senses but also you’d mingle with true Malabaris.
Sunday, February 22, 2015
Can you be a fan of a celebrity as well as a journalist at the same time? This question had been haunting me for a while. Journalism ethics says all are equal before you. We are not even supposed to address anyone as sir/madam but Mr./Ms. Every human creature in front of you is either a source or subject.
Leaving apart the ethics, I always end up saying “I’m a huge fan of you. I admire your talents so much”. As soon as the interview with a celebrity is over, I sit before computer fearing if I could do justice as a journalist. I must write impartially. The only people I’m committed to should be common readers. They expect a neutral view from my side.
While reporting for Kerala State Youth Festival in January, I happened to meet violin maestro Balabaskar. He was a participant in 1980s. He was memorizing those days. I went straight to him and said, “Balu chetta, njan thankalude valiya oru fan aanu” (Baluji, I’m a great admirer of yours). Just after uttering those words, I was like ‘Oops, again the aficionado in me is out’. I knew every bit of him from his role as a judge of a reality show till the formation of his new band Balaleela.
I’ve always wondered whether other media persons also feel the same. There are reports appearing in news papers regarding royal family at Thiruvananthapuram. Readers would find blind devotion in reports. Members of royal family might be clean or corrupted. But it is the court that gives final verdict. Same is the case of devotional centers and human-gods. Fidelity of writers overpowers actual facts.
At last I’d conclude with a thought that we are also human beings. We do have our own faith that may interpret our thoughts during our work. But I also admit the best journalists are those who’d remain at the middle-of-the-road.
Sunday, February 1, 2015
Image courtesy: EQUIPPING FOR EMINISTRY
I have wondered how people could speak over phone for hours. My subject to talk in phone will be ended by maximum of one hour. But I had days where I used to spend 5-6 hours chatting with my friends. Whether it is sms, apps or Gtalk, I managed to extend conversations. Here are the main three reasons for my love to chat:
No need of face-to-face talks
Great people say decency is to speak face-to-face. If we are far away or if we could not handle an emotional person, chatting is the best option. We could easily convince a person to accept the reality by means of non-vocal ways especially chat. Moreover, you could communicate with a fellow who lives on the other side of the globe without wasting a huge amount of money as phone bill. All you need is an internet connection which cost no more than Rs. 1000 a month.
I could message my husband or my family about the important updates. In case of phoning, they might hang up saying they are busy or even cancel the call. While I message, they could look out when they are free. It will be there in their phone or computers.
Friends and family Groups
I am constantly in touch with my cousins at America, Europe, Africa or Middle-East. We are connected by social media chats or messenger services. Same is the case with friends. I am an active participant in all the groups I’ve joined. I know what is going on in my friends as well as relatives’ circle. They would update me even the minute details like what is the curry there for lunch, from where did they buy their new dress, how did they manage to drive their kids to school etc. Along with them, I too feel the pressure they face for exams, the mood swings they face and so on. Gossips and appreciations are shared well via chat more than phone calls. Smileys add colors to it. If we bear the ‘smiley’ expressions on over face, it’d be really awkward!
Romance at its best
In earlier days, lovers used to express their feelings over love letters although they may meet once in a while. This proves romance can be portrayed by written words rather than speech. As technology grew, written letters paved way for electronic means. Messengers and chats took over the show. E-mails are also rarely sent by couples. Guys or girls who are committed will be busy typing in their laptops or mobiles. If you are unsure about this, just check a few college hostels (school hostels too).
Letters express the untold feelings and thoughts that our vocal chords fail to articulate. Days are awesome when you come to know your friends and family is just at a click away.
Wednesday, January 14, 2015
If you ask me one year ago, I’d say I can’t complete such huge three books. But now I can read any number of pages although 24 hours in a day seem to be so short for my daily activities. Thus I completed three books of Amish, the Shiva Trilogy. No similes or comparisons would match his writing style. You must read at least one of Amish’s books once in your lifetime. His Shiva Trilogies are:
- The Immortals of Meluha
- The Secret of the Nagas
- The Oath of the Vayuputras
All these have been translated to many regional languages in India. I gathered these books from a library next door. While the first two went off very fast, third part took a bit long.
Story revolves around a tribal head Shiva. From a common fellow, he was molded as a godly being. He marries Sati, the princess of Meluha. In short, it is just a reframe of Lord Shiva’s story.
- Wonderful narration
- Perfect love story
- Background has been studied well
- Third part is lagging
- Supports concept of living god
- At times, encouraged violence
Author has showed us there is no need to run behind fantasies like Harry Potter as there are so many stories that can be elaborated or altered in India itself. I felt my eyes wet when I went through some of the emotional sequence in that book. I must say it is for the first time. Anyway, don’t miss this book- the voice of voiceless!
Wednesday, January 7, 2015
Somehow we all have managed to replace 2014 as 2015. It has been one week since my last post appeared here. I don’t want to break the word I’d given to my readers as well as to myself. Coming to New Year thing… For journalist folks, every day is fresh and beginning of an era. News of today won’t repeat again another day. In fact, novelty is the main point that dragged me to this profession.
Nevertheless, we do enjoy festivals. We celebrate in our own way. Employees took a share and bought a cake. Calendars are replaced. New colorful header for newspaper was introduced. We can’t expect more celebrations as the readers need news the very next day. There is no time to spare to enjoy or mourn. Public are not concerned of the happenings at our office. All they want to know is what is going around the world, country, state and locality.
Being a Malayali lady, my New Year celebrations are mostly confined inside the four walls of my apartment. On 30th December 2014, I had a conversation with driver of my office cab while returning back to home at night.
- Is there New Year Celebrations in Kozhikode?
- Of course yes!
- Beach is the main center. Some hotels also conduct programs.
- Will it have female participation?
- Hmm? No!
- It is better for ladies to stay home. Why should you take a risk?
- But there are parties at Kochi and outside Kerala
- Well, we are not that much developed here.
He is just a representative of the male community in Kerala. My family is also the same. My brother told New Year party is not a good choice for females to attend. So like all my fellow lady folks, I too watched live celebrations over TV. I heard fireworks from outside. I ran out to balcony. Colors appeared in sky. It was really far away. I wanted to go there. But I’m a lady. We’d walk out only when sun accompanies us
I went to bed and closed my eyes. I stand in the middle of a hanging bridge. Crackers and fireworks embraced me from both sides. I held it my hands. No burns, no restrictions… I live there with my dreams. The day I lose my ability to imagine, that’s the end of my life!